In this morning’s National Sanctity of Human Life reflection, I read the following statement to the gathered at Middletown Springs Community Church:
We have, as part of our official church statement of faith, an affirmation of the biblical and biological truth that life begins at conception. Article 13 of our doctrinal statement reads as follows:
We believe that children, from the moment of conception, are a blessing and heritage from the Lord and that parents are to demonstrate and teach them God’s pattern for life.
Because of this belief we will make the following affirmations and denials:
1. We affirm that all human beings are made in the image of God and therefore equal to each other and sacred in and of themselves and that therefore abortion is not a health care issue or a family planning issue but first and foremost a “God issue.”
2. We deny that one’s imaging of God and inherent sacredness is contingent upon their usefulness or convenience to their family or society, their religious heritage, their physical health or mental capabilities, their race, or their social or economic class. In other words, no unborn child is less human because he or she is mentally or physically disabled, poor, non-white, or unwanted by his or her family.
3. We affirm that the Roe v. Wade ruling officially codified the systematic killing of innocent human beings, and that therefore it legalized systemic injustice in our nation making abortion not just a “God issue” but a human rights and civil rights issue.
4. We deny that national laws determine what is just or moral and in fact it is possible for nations to pass unjust and immoral laws.
5. We affirm that it is the duty of Americans, be they Christians or not, to protect the innocent and defend the defenseless and protest injustice.
6. We deny that standing up for the defenseless and innocent in this regard is solely about being philosophically against abortion but rather:
7. We affirm that to be philosophically against abortion is to be actively for human flourishing in concerted efforts of caring for the poor and the orphan and for women in crisis, and in the alleviation of suffering of all kinds in our neighborhoods and other spheres of influence.
8. We deny that victims of abortion are limited to unborn children but also often include their mothers and fathers and families,
9. And we affirm that nobody who has opted for abortion is “damaged goods” or unloved by God or beyond hope and healing, for we affirm that the gospel which announces the good news of God’s grace in Christ Jesus is true and powerful.
10. So we deny opposition to abortion on the grounds of political expediency or political success or the advancing of any political party or sect.
11. And we affirm that we oppose abortion as a means of obeying God’s command to our love our neighbor and therefore as a means of making Jesus Christ look supreme and glorious.